George Santayana said, “Those who remember the past can find clever ways to repeat it.” There’s a clever way to repeat the past when it comes to redeveloping the downtown. Millions of taxpayer dollars have been poured into it, but to no avail. Install as many historic streetlights and signs, brick pavers and crosswalk accents as you want, people just don’t want to go there. It’s time to consult the Sociopaths’ Manifesto. The 1901 Moss Fire successfully turned the urban core around. Who’s to say it wouldn’t work again. Moss Fire Two would clear the path for starting over and implementing true market-based solutions. What’s more, government wouldn’t need to get involved.
First, let’s visit a little history lesson from Laura Ann Harrington, who put together this video as a history project for Dr. Aaron Sheehan-Dean when he was still teaching at the University of Norflaland. Moss Fire One wreaked tremendous havoc.
For all the trouble it caused, Moss Fire One set off an explosion of free-market forces that made the downtown greater than ever. Who can deny that the ends justified the means. In the process only seven people died.
Why revisit Moss Fire One? Because the socialists have taken over. President Barack Obama occupies in the White House. Mayor Alvin Brown sits in the mayor’s office.
Whenever in doubt, I ask myself, what would Ayn Rand’s protagonist, John Galt, do. And Galt would say, “To fight the power, sociopaths must unite! Sociopaths must organize! Sociopaths must offer an alternative vision!” The sociopathic vision is one of no government whatsoever and of market solutions for every facet of life. It’s laissez–faire capitalism from side to side and top to bottom. Not to mention going everywhere armed-to-the-teeth and being ready 24/7 to kill. Most recently, this agenda has been laid out in The Sociopaths’ Manifesto, which is a distillation of Ayn Rand’s philosophy drawn from Anthem (1938), The Fountainhead (1943), Atlas Shrugged (1957), Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal (1966), and the most important work of all, The Virtue of Selfishness (1964).
Rand made it clear we have only two choices: to be a socialist, or to be a sociopath. There’s no in-between. I’ve made my decision.
I’m telling ya, friends, there’s trouble, trouble brewing right here in Rio on the River. What does socialism look like in Jaxonpool? Redevelopment. Under the camouflage of “public-private partnerships,” Mayor Alvin Brown’s has tried to impose a Soviet-style command economy. Brown issues Stalin-esque fiats to remake the urban core. The apparatchiks on the city council rubber stamp his proposals. His vehicle of dictatorial command is the Народный комиссариат государственной безопасности, also known as the People’s Commissariat for Downtown Redevelopment. It recently ordered that Balis Park in San Marco Square be transformed into a workers’ paradise:
In the pipe dreams of socialist realism, figures toil happily to further socialism’s goals.
I’m telling ya, friends . . . . The San Marco Streetscape improvement installed two socialist roundabouts, one at Landon, the other at Naldo Socialist roundabouts
And there’s more trouble. Consider the The Brooklyn Community Development initiative and its related “220 Riverside” project. This project supposedly will erase the blight existing in the 11-acre plot between Riverside Avenue and Park Street. You call that blight? A $5.15 million Recapture Enhanced Value grant (“grant” means chi-ching) and $1.8 million to improve infrastructure (more chi-ching). Supposedly going in will be a seven-story housing project, thousands of square feet of retail space, and an adjacent community park. This park will hold year-round festivals celebrating fearless leaders Obama and Alvin Brown. This “public-private partnership” — this wolf in sheep’s clothing — provides another example of the way the Народный комиссариат государственной безопасности Quixotically picks winners and losers.
Still more trouble: the city is putting up a bond to help build a dog park in Riverside. A dog park, for Christ sakes!
So, there’s trouble in Rio on the River, my friends. Here’s my solution. For the cost of a few matches and maybe several hundred gallons of gasoline, we could start afresh. Burn everything to the ground. Raze all the buildings, free up the land, and allow market forces to do the revitalizing. Hundreds and hundreds of acres of suddenly vacant land downtown. A scorched-earth policy. Rebuild from scratch. A bonanza for developers. Just let capitalism do its thing. No more need for government. No more “public / private partnerships.” It’ll be private enterprise, all the way down.
Only seven died. Not too high a price.
.And so you see, we sociopaths have answers. THE ANSWER, in fact. The answer to encroaching socialism. When once we have destroyed everything downtown, the free market will do the rest. As God intended. George Santayana was right. So glad I remembered him and what he said. Moss Fire Two. It’s the way to go.
August’s List: Recently published music videos, edited by Farinelli. Watch & listen
Smart Ass Cripple: Expressing pain through sarcasm since 2010, by Mike Ervin. Read.
Panned Review: Film reviews by Jacob Lusk. Read
Calvin’s Story: Epilepsy & beyond: a mother’s journal, by Christy Shake. Read
Maggie World, Normalizing the abnormal, by Sally Coghlan McDonald. Read
On the Blink: Considering how my light is spent, by Emily Michael. Read